Home Regular Contributors Catherine Brownlee Are Worms the Future of Regenerative Agriculture?

Are Worms the Future of Regenerative Agriculture?

Catherine Brownlee

Our friend Michael Launer is an Albertan and a strong advocate for green technologies.

He and his partners founded Annelida in 2018, an innovative ag-tech company that is positioned to disrupt conventional thinking in the agriculture sector. They have looked at the wider issues of conventional fertilizer use and its impacts on soil biology for producers. Without natural replenishment of microbiology back into the ground, the use of traditional fertilizers leads to depletion and degradation of the soil over time. Their team took on this challenge and is producing enhanced nutrient efficiency formulas – modern and effective regenerative ag solutions derived directly from nature. This is natural supplementation allowing for reduced fertilizer use at sustained or improved yields.

Every week, Annelida diverts over 100,000 lbs of green waste from ending up in landfills and feeds that waste into a proprietary processing system that utilizes over 80 million red wiggler worms to get the job done. For every pound of green waste, their worms generate ¾ lb of worm castings (worm poop, otherwise known as vermicompost). This naturally processed organic matter is essentially nature’s best balanced and formulated plant food. Worms have the unique ability to create a powerful, nutrient-rich biology that has a large diversity of beneficial microbes. No composting piles, no smells – just worms converting waste. These castings are the building block for the many certified organic products that are produced in liquid, granulated and blended forms. Annelida is perfectly positioned to positively disrupt the agriculture and horticulture market with their proprietary products that integrate seamlessly with current nutrient programs and equipment. Annelida has several revenue streams focusing on agriculture, horticulture, co-packing and custom soil blending.

As a proud Alberta company, they are selling their products throughout Canada, the US and are working on expanding to a broad network of partners globally. With their ability to scale this approach in a virtually unlimited market, they are developing programs to capture revenue from green waste diversion. As new spaces for landfills are becoming scarcer and hauling waste (green or otherwise) becoming costlier, operators are looking at waste diversion solutions everywhere.

With the data collected from their customers’ applications, Annelida is developing predictive analytics, strengthening the value proposition to their customers and optimizing soil nutrient and production yield metrics. They are operating two state-of-the-art worm casting production facilities in central Alberta. Their IP is replicable, scalable and deployable in any municipality, allowing the flexibility to repurpose a multitude of green waste from local businesses in any region.

Annelida’s worms double in mass every six months, giving them the ability to scale up production effectively. Their microbiology and agronomy teams are working extensively with multiple growers and agricultural institutions to carry out additional research and trials, further advancing their expertise and program’s effectiveness on combating soil degradation worldwide. They have completed several independent growth trials that have rendered great results time and time again. Most trials are realizing a significant yield increase at a reduced conventional rate of fertilizer use, saving producers money by utilizing Annelida technology. That not only keeps their customers coming back but sees them expanding their programs every season.

This is really just the beginning – they see the opportunity to place an Annelida facility in every region around the globe and bring regenerative innovation in agriculture from Alberta to the world.

We are very proud of Annelida and the good work that they are doing in Nisku, Alberta!